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The differences between Hallam and Uni Of, from someone who has been to both

Varsity is a cult


There is seemingly a class war between The University of Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam and it is baffling.

Students at both universities pay way over the odds each year for a degree that is exactly the same as the other, save the name and university. BA, BSc, University of Sheffield, Sheffield Hallam, they're all the same in the long run because guess what – we're all being ripped off by the system.

It's like choosing what food to have on the way home from a night out – pizza? Kebab? Chips? Either way, it just doesn't matter because at the end of the day – or night – they're all going to do the same job, they'll all be way too greasy, and they'll all look the same when you throw it all back up again.

But in the interests of lightheartedness and whimsy, I'm here to tell you all about the differences between Sheffield Hallam and the University of Sheffield in the most humorous and mildly controversial way possible because apparently people care about this kind of stuff – I've been to both universities and now I'm crippled by debt and stress, here is my hot take.

The Students

In three years at Sheffield Hallam I met a lot of people, but I can say that there are four main areas that Sheffield Hallam students come from: Sheffield, Nottingham, Liverpool, and the Greater Manchester area – in particular but not restricted to – Stockport. The North, if you can't read between the lines.

A generic guy called Sam at Hallam, for instance, would wear tracksuit bottoms, sports jumper, and a Team Hallam hat, because he is Hallam 'til he dies, cut him and he'll bleed HallamNation.

Jump to the University of Sheffield students and you'll find that everyone seemingly comes from London or the Home Counties. Sam, the generic Hallam student, would wear the nineties skater look with ease, giving you that feeling that he doesn't care about his appearance, yet he has a tuxedo in his wardrobe that he will be more than willing to wear when the end of year balls come around.

Is that divisive enough?

The Buildings

I love the Diamond. Sometimes I go to the Diamond and listen to Arctic Monkeys' Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino because that's clearly the best place to listen to it. There is nowhere in Sheffield Hallam to listen to Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino, which must be why it isn't a Russell Group university.

Collegiate Campus offers a green area to sit and do work whilst being simultaneously featured on the front page of next year's prospectus, but compared to Firth Court and the Arts Tower's situation next to Weston Park – the only place I have ever seen anyone tightrope – a tough competition is formed. The Arts Tower has the paternoster, Owen Building at Sheffield Hallam has the lifts that always seem to be moving but never to the floor that you want it to be. It really is a close call.

Obviously, the University of Sheffield has the best SU and that's fine, but Hallam's SU is inside some enormous metal curling kettles which is just way more interesting, even if it is shit.

Which brings us to:

The Libraries

Adsetts is insane. Go into Adsetts in the middle of the afternoon, it's light outside, it's clearly daytime. Leave Adsetts what feels like an hour, maybe two hours later, and lo and behold it's pitch black. That two hours was actually six hours, but guess what, there's no sense of time in Adsetts, because somehow in a building made of glass there are barely any windows. Barely any windows yet pigeons still seem to find a way in. You go in on Level Four and that's the ground floor, yet go to any other floor and somehow that's still the ground floor. No sense of time, no windows, no coherent concept of the ground floor. Going to Adsetts is like watching a Stanley Kubrick film on LSD whilst in a simulation.

The IC is pretty boring, comparatively.

The Nights Out

HallamNation is like Schrödinger’s Cat, in that there always seems to be a lot of people there, yet in three years I never met a single person who went to HallamNation. People may go, but not people you know.

I've never been to Pop Tarts because it's always sold out, and Roar isn't for me because I don't play rugby. Consider this a pass for both parties.


I've said it before, Varsity at Sheffield University is a cult. People who would otherwise not give a shit about lacrosse – because really, who cares about lacrosse? – now give every shit about lacrosse. Every shit in their body now cares only for lacrosse and whether those brave Uni Of lacrosse players can bring home the lacrosse Varsity win for their thousands of adoring fans. It's lacrosse, guys, come on.

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Nobody gives a shit about Varsity at Sheffield Hallam unless they are in Varsity.